To all those who love the Lord with their whole heart, with their whole soul and mind, with their whole strength, and love their neighbours as themselves, and hate their bodies with their vices and sins, and receive the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, and produce worthy fruits of penance:
Oh, how happy and blessed are these men and women when they do these things and persevere in doing them, since the Spirit of the Lord will rest upon them, and He will make His home and dwelling among them.
They are children of the heavenly Father, whose works they do, and they are spouses, brothers, and mothers of our Lord Jesus Christ.
We are spouses when the faithful soul is joined to our Lord Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit.
We are brothers to Him when we do the will of the Father Who is in Heaven .
We are his mothers when we carry Him in our heart and body through divine love and pure and sincere conscience and when we give birth to Him through a holy manner of working, which should shine before others as an example.
Oh, how glorious it is, how holy and great, to have a Father in Heaven!
Oh, how holy, consoling, beautiful and wondrous it is to have such a Spouse!
Oh, how holy and how loving, pleasing, humble, peaceful, sweet, lovable, and desirable above all things to have such a Brother and such a Son: our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave up His life for His sheep , and Who prayed to the Father saying:
O Holy Father,
protect those in your name
whom you have given to me in the world;
they were yours
and you have given them to me
and the words which you gave to me,
I have given to them,
and they have accepted them
and have believed truly
that I have come from you
and they have known that you sent me.
I pray for them and not for the world.
Bless and sanctify them
and I sanctify myself for them.
Not only for these do I pray,
but for those who through their words
will believe in me,
so that they may be made holy in being one
as we are one.
And I wish, Father,
that where I am
they also may be with me
so that they may see my glory
in your kingdom.
St Francis of Assisi,
First Letter to the Brothers and Sisiters of Penance